Microsoft Surface Pro 3stars
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Apple MacBook Air (13-inch)stars
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Apple MacBook Pro with Retina Display (2013, 15-inch screen)stars
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Asus Transformer Book T100
It's hard to think of a word other than "solid" to describe Sony's Vaio S series. Even as a euphemism for average, it fits. That's not to say that there's anything wrong with the S series, either; simply that nothing really jumps out at you.
Unless, of course, you happen to buy the 13.3-inch laptop in pink or deep-blue, and not the slightly more reserved black, silver or white. We suppose there's the backlit keyboard, too; something we think should be in every laptop.
The 1366x768 screen is up to the usual Sony standard, and has a decent spray of ports, too, with dual USB 2.0 ports, a USB 3.0 port, HDMI, VGA, SD card reader, MS card reader and, interestingly, a docking port on the bottom. This is for a battery shim, a slimline piece that sits on the bottom of the laptop and provides extra battery charge. Sadly, we didn't have one to review for our tests, so the battery scores here are for the laptop alone.
There's some decent power in the S series, as well — although since Sony has a lot of SKUs, you'll have to mix and match to meet your needs.